plans for the orchard garden

With the two west corners of the orchard garden done and the veggie box in place, I wanted to have a look at how much room I have left on the east side of what will eventually be a circular lawn.  So my youngest and I, using a skipping rope, turned ourselves into a human compass this morning and marked out the circle which will form the edge of the lawn.  It helps me get a better feel for how much space I have.


It’ll be a few years before the east side, above, will be finished.  There will be a little sitting area back here because it’s the sunniest spot in the evening and because, well, I’m trying not to overwhelm myself with too much planting space.  In that vein, I’m also planting more shrubs than I did in my old garden.

Goals for this spring:

  • add another haskap (honeyberry) shrub where the small bamboo pyramid is,
  • move the 3 Romeo cherries and an ornamental grass from the front; this will turn the veggie garden into a separate “garden room”,
  • move a golden dogwood (cornus alba “Neon Burst”) to the spot marked by the large pyramid,
  • take down the large (unhealthy) crabapple tree and replace with a dwarf blue spruce for more winter greenery,
  • add some bergenia from the veggie garden.

Evans cherry trees one week later

Just last week-end I posted photos of my cherry trees which had finally started to turn yellow.  Well that didn’t last long!



At least there is more to look at now in this garden area, even in winter.  I see these two trees and their surrounding underplantings from the kitchen window.  I *must* have good garden views from the house to get me through winter!  So, one week down…

Evans cherry in fine fall form

What a beautiful day it was yesterday!  I got out and cleaned up the garden a little but I didn’t touch this area because I like to leave sedums and grasses standing over the winter. And plus they still look so good!  The Evans cherry trees were still green until a couple days ago.



These trees were just planted this spring.

Click here and scroll down to see how this garden area has evolved.

two statuesque, scented, butterfly-attracting plants for fall awesomeness

It’s always bittersweet when the bugbane and the joe pye weed start flowering.  They are two of my favourite plants and I have to wait almost all summer for their beautiful flowers and sweet scents.  But their flowers mean summer is over.  Let’s hope for a long, warm fall!

Purple bugbane: IMG_0980

and Joe Pye Weed:


And while we’re at it, the Bee Balm and Sedum Autumn Joy look pretty good in fall too:


To get a wider view of the garden areas these plants are in, see today’s other post.

The Orchard Garden after 1 year

new house exterior

This garden has been totally recreated since we moved in last September.  You can’t tell from the top picture but those are four old gnarly old lilacs, which had been pruned on one side because they were too close to the garage so they were lopsided and seemed to be dangerously leaning over the lawn.  This spring the lilac roots got dug out and I planted two little Evans Cherry trees instead – they are planted at an appropriate distance so you will always be able to walk on the sidewalk without hitting your head.  Having always lived in older houses, this is one of my pet peeves: trees and shrubs planted without accounting for their mature size!!!  What a waste.

Here’s the back half of the garden a little closer up:


I especially wanted a garden in this area because it’s what I look at from the kitchen window.  Here’s the kitchen view:


Ahhhhhh. Much better.

gillenia trifoliata (Bowman’s root)


This plant was shared with me by a friend in Calgary.  I love it so much it was one of the plants I brought with me when I moved.  The delicate, airiness of the flowers is just. so. pretty. and as if that’s not enough, the red stems and seedheads will add interest for the rest of the year.  This is definitely on my favourites list!  And it even goes perfectly with the brick background, n’est-ce pas?